With the world’s attention set to fall on British royalty once more as the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge rapidly approach the due date for their first child, the media pen outside the Lindo Wing of the hospital where Catherine will give birth is heaving, and not just with people.
The amount of equipment in the area is large, even for a media event, and ladders in particular are in abundance, with everyone wanting to stand tall to get the best, unobstructed view of the entrance.
But as the cameramen and women, photographers and television producers wait around for the royal event of the year, some may have too much time on their hands.
Small signs have appeared on many of the ladders, telling the readers ‘Please don’t feed the photographers’ and ‘Will work for food’.
The light-hearted take on so many ladders being in one place lead to a few signs advertising ladder sales, with some reading ‘For Sale: photographer not included’, ‘As seen on TV’ and others, including the Reuters ladder, merely advertising the price — in this case £4,300.
Jo Bounds, who writes for ‘Mother & Baby’ magazine explained, “yeah the photographers have been putting notes on their ladders because obviously they’re not sitting on their ladders the whole time. I think it’s just a bit of fun as well because when you’re sitting on a ladder for the best part of a day you want to have a fun time as well.”
Sky News Royal Correspondent, Paul Harrison, joked that he agreed with the sign advising members of the public not to feed the journalists,” ‘don’t feed the photographers’ is probably my favorite of all of them. But yeah, you shouldn’t feed them.”
With time on their hands and a growing sense of camaraderie amongst the waiting media it seems that spirits are set to stay high as Simon Vigar from Channel 5 hoped it would.
“It’s just growing all the time. It looks like a world convention of step ladders here and those are for the photographers. It’s going to be absolute chaos but hopefully people will stay in a good mood because of course we are in the middle of a hospital here.”
Many had taken a more entrepreneurial approach however, instead advertising services as painters and decorators while they wait.
Others seemed a lot more focused on the task in hand, offering to trade their step-ladders for taller ones.
A sweepstake has also been started as journalists deprived of other forms of entertainment resort to gambling, legal in the UK, on sex of the baby and the day it will be born.